Keeping pupils at the centre
As the year draws to a close, we are being as busy as usual.
Our new One Page Profiles are being created, ready to hand on to the new teacher. This year, we have run an excellent system, whereby parents and children are writing directly onto the postcards, and then these are being returned to school for the teachers and teaching assistants to add to them. It is lovely seeing a variety of handwriting on the postcard profiles, and also to see the quality of comments being written – very insightful from parents and children. These new profiles will be handed to the new teacher by the children next week, when we have our ‘meet your new teacher’ afternoon. The profile postcards that have been worked on this year have been put in with the reports to be sent home.
Our Year Five Transition review meetings have just been held, with our Educational Psychologist and the secondary school meeting with teachers and parents to see what needs to be put in place for successful transition to High School. We talked a lot about the role of One Page Profiles, and will even create a credit card size version for children to have in their pockets, ready to show new teachers in a discrete but effective way.
I have also led an effective and powerful Team Around the Child Meeting for one of our pupils who has epilepsy and autism. We started be celebrating all the things we love about the little boy, and wrote these around a photograph of him. This set the meeting off in such a strong way, and ensured that he was at the very centre of everything we were talking about. We kept this piece of paper in front of us, and I kept referring back to these comments throughout the meeting. I then moved the meeting on to look at the successes of the year, from the point of view of school, support agencies and parents. Once again, this kept our pupil at the centre of discussions. Because these two activities had set such a positive tone, and a level of trust had been established, we were able to move on to the questions/ queries/ not working section with a refreshing level of honesty. As this area developed, we kept referring back to all of the positives, but it also provided a very clear message that everyone had the same anxieties; we realised that no-one was isolated, and that by working together we could solve issues and concerns. We ended the meeting by going back to the initial sheet on all the things we love about him. The atmosphere during and after the meeting, was calm and positive despite difficult and emotive issues being discussed. This approach was amazing, powerful and effective.